Saturday, March 28, 2009

Do you have screenvision?

In the mobile world, the term "third screen" refers to the screen of your phone/smart device. The first and second screens are, of course, your television and computer screens. But, have you ever wondered how many hours per day you spend staring at a screen?

The Council for Research Excellence issued a report last week which said that adults are exposed to screens--computer, television, cellphones, GPS and other--about 8.5 hours per day. The surprising fact? The age group of 45-54 year olds spend an extra hour per day in front of screens, which seems to contradict conventional wisdom--that younger consumers would be the ones most likely to spend more time with various screens.

The study bears out that television remains the dominant medium, even though viewers can watch on alternate delivery screens like cellphones or computer monitors. The vast majority still prefer their television on the big screen and spend a lot of time there--slightly more than five hours per day, on average.

Not surprisingly, the web has changed viewing behavior and that change has occurred most with younger consumers. College students and young professionals (18-24 group) watch the least TV--about 3.5 hours per day. However, this group spends the most time texting (29 minutes per day) and watching online video (5.5 minutes per day.)

One interesting, but perhaps not surprising, note--those surveyed tended to underestimate the amount of TV they watch each day. There appears to be a stigma to admitting to viewing a lot of TV versus overestimating time spent online or in other digital viewing options. I guess no one wants to be considered a "couch potato."

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